Many of us have little phrases we use to remind us of things we've learned in the past, in the hope of avoiding a repeat of our mistakes. On my curling team, for example, my vice and I will often say to each other, "Get greedy, get sorry...." when we're considering what shot to play. We have learned from hard experience to try the low-risk shot rather than the high-reward one.
My new phrase when it comes to grocery shopping will be, "Fifteen Dollar Bacon", which for me is the price at which sanctimonious self-righteousness will be defeated by my Scottish wallet.
Yes, I bought a pound of bacon for fifteen dollars.
It was an accident. Please don't tell my mom or my brothers.
You see, my Sweetie and I are, well, 'into' food. What we're especially into is talking about food. We are quick to tell anyone who will listen that we get our beef from a farmer in Adjala, and our lamb from a farmer in Clearview. I can go on and on about how I grow and preserve my own tomatoes, and don't get us started on the fact that we have a chicken guy, so we meet the chickens before we eat the chickens and they live outdoors, pecking in the grass and devouring bugs. Remember, I grew up on a farm and so if I still drank milk, I would want it to be raw, if possible, harvested with my own little hands. We're invested in our food, we cook from scratch as much as possible, and so on and so on.
I suspect some people avoid us.
As we were having one of our favourite couples in the world over for the weekend, on Thursday, with a very long grocery list and a bit of time on my hands, I went (finally) to the newly-opened food co-operative in Collngwood, thinking to myself, "If they have anything that's on my list, I'll pick it up there, and go to the supermarket afterwards." A win-win, or so I thought.
I didn't know I was overspending so hideously because I was lost in the vision of myself buying my earth-friendly, eco-friendly, animal-friendly, fair-trade stuff. "Look at me," I thought to myself, "Doggie in the car at the curb, cloth bags at the ready, why, my real name could be MoonbeamMotherEarth SavetheWhales.
Later, at home, I told Sweetie about my day, showed him the beautiful, thick-cut bacon, and when he asked how much it was, I told him I didn't know; there had been no price on the package. There in my wallet was the incriminating evidence of my navel-gazing: I had paid $14.97 for one pound of bacon.
To its credit, it was Organic Bacon. For fifteen bucks a pound, it had damn well better be organic.
For fifteen bucks a pound, it had better be organic, grass-fed, diapered, homeschooled and tucked into bed with a kiss!
And herein lies the problem with clean, organic, local, kiss-on-the-head food: most of us can't afford it, and those of us who can, won't pay ridiculous prices for it more than once.